VISITING: Southeast Queensland jockey Amy Van Der Sanden.
VISITING: Southeast Queensland jockey Amy Van Der Sanden. Keagan Elder

Keppel Park all 'dolled-up' for weekend race meeting

''SHADES” of Australian racing's greatest winning mare Winx will be available at Yeppoon's Keppel Park racecourse tomorrow, which given the glorious spring weather conditions predicted could be valuable acquisitions.

Yeppoon Turf Club (YTC) chairman Gary Hall said Winx caps would be on sale and he expected racegoers to snap them up and wear them proudly trackside.

Keppel Park is all "dolled-up” for traditionally, albeit arguably given the popularity of race meetings there, its biggest race day for the year.

Mention of the expression "dolled-up” takes the mind wandering to the Fashions of the Field at Keppel Park where $3500 including cash prizes will be won by those judged the best at strutting their stuff. "We have a number of categories and given it is Spring Racing the fashion conscious, both ladies and gents will be vivid in their colourful outfits on the Keppel Park lawns. The club is very excited as to how the Fashion on the Field events have escalated here over the years,” Hall said.

Although he didn't need to say it, Hall's club would also be delighted about the strength of racing competition on the lush Keppel Park grass circuit.

No fewer than 47 horses have accepted for the strong five race card and each and every race is composed of sufficient starters for full each-way betting to take place.

With jockeys as scarce as hen's teeth in Capricornia presently, the YTC has done well whereby 11 hoops will ride and as of last night only one runner would be deprived of a start in the 12 horse Maiden Plate (950m).

A trio of visiting jockeys from Southeast Queensland - Justin Stanley; Amy Van Der Sanden and four kilograms claimer Shannyn Barlow have saved the day for the club and trainers by taking rides.

Barlow's valuable claiming allowance will be a godsend for prolific winner the Bevan Johnson Miles trained Fab's Cowboy in the $9000 G.J. Gardner Yeppoon Newmarket (1300m).

Her claim brings Fab's Cowboy in on 57.5kg which is a luxury for the adaptable and genuine sprinter-miler and on that basis, he looms large as the winner.

Enhanced by the presence of Krystle Johnston's Craiglea Deken (Asley Butler) and Christopher Maxfield's Embrace The Pain (Mark Barnham), the Newmarket is a gun race.

Knockout prospects include those of veteran scribes, Terry Butts' Cleaver (David Simmons) and old Tony McMahon's Mamselle Corday (Justin Stanley).

Stanley has a very good ride on Shane Sigvart's Bauhinia Drought in the 3YO Maiden (1200m) as well as Mike and Christine Dore's last start Callaghan Park winner Our Lucky Lucy (Class 2 - 950m).

In that race, the Class 2, the in-form trainer of the moment in John O'Sing, presents a real live hope in Pennycalaine (Scott Sheargold).

Coinciding with the glamour VRC Derby Day races at Flemington which has long been regarded as Australia's best race day, the Yeppoon meeting promises to be a Bobby Dazzler.

Some 140 horses will line up on the Flemington nine- race card which has attracted scores of Central Queensland racegoers.

However, one thing's for certain the 2000 plus likely to be trackside at Keppel Park are assured of having a fun day on racecourse that is second to none as far as picturesque settings go.

Gates will open early at Keppel Park where bookmakers will be ready and calling the odds for the first at Flemington at 11.45am.

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